Honda not ruling out Formula 1 return in new turbo era

1990:  Ayrton Senna of Brazil in action in his McLaren Honda during the Monaco Grand Prix at the Monte Carlo circuit in Monaco. Senna finished in first place.  Mandatory Credit: Pascal  Rondeau/AllsportOct.11 (GMM) Honda, a multiple Formula One world title winner in the past as engine supplier to McLaren and Williams,  is not ruling out a return to F1 in the future.

The Japanese carmaker pulled out of the sport after the 2008 season, amid the global financial crisis and the slump in new car sales.

But Honda’s head of research and development Yoshiharu Yamamoto has told autocar.co.uk that the marque still sees F1 as an attractive platform.

“On a personal level I love racing, but there is a lot involved when you are in F1 – it is the very top of auto racing and that requires a large commitment. But it is true that we do look up at those races and hope that one day we can take part again,” he said.

“I do not personally think we can just go straight back immediately, but there is potential for the rules to change and attract us. I follow the rules, certainly, and if they present an opportunity then it would be nice to go back.”

His comments follow speculation that F1’s 2014 switch to radical new turbo V6 engine rules could attract more car manufacturers to F1.

Honda has committed to running a 1.6 litre turbo engine in the World Touring Car Championship (WTCC).

“This is my personal view – not that of Honda – but I feel the first thing we must do is win in the WTCC, and then perhaps we can look further afield,” said Yamamoto.

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